The invisible force. The all too familiar companion on your Journey.
Its presence is all but guaranteed when you make notable changes in your life. I wrote about 15 signs you may be in the Decline Stage in a recent post. When you feel the decline, you usually have an idea of what you can do to fix it. Resistance enters when you try to act on those ideas. It finds a way to slow you down; it encourages you to delay and talks you out of taking action.
Why does resistance smash your positive intentions?
If I could give you a rock-solid-take-it-to-the-bank answer – I would. Unfortunately, people have tried to figure this out for decades. It is a complex issue with no single answer. What I can offer is the following 5 strategies. While not foolproof, they give you a chance for fighting the demons within.
5 Strategies for Combating Resistance
1. Embrace the Fear: You don’t want to fail. Nor do you want to look foolish. You certainly don’t want to disappoint or fall short of your desires. All of those “fears” (rationale or irrationale) contribute to building resistance. Most of your fears are either irrational or future based. They aren’t real or current. Embrace them; accept them. Fear is real and normal. The trick is not giving it enough power to slow you down!
2. Forgive and Begin Again: When you allow resistance to win, it is frustrating and self-defeating. Common reactions are to quit trying or stop fighting. You beat yourself up and start negative self-talk: “I knew I couldn’t do this.” Self abuse keeps you down and out of the game. Net/Net – resistance wins. Instead – let it go. Forgive. Give yourself a break. Watch a Rocky movie if you need to, but forgive, forget and climb back on the horse!
3. Stay Uncomfortable: When you resist, you know it. Your subconscious sends guilt your way and nagging feelings of disappointment. Left alone – you learn to live with the disappointment or shortcomings to the point it doesn’t bother you any more. The psychobabble suggests you habituate to the ineffective behavior. In short – “the lack of progress becomes okay.” That is dangerous. Make yourself uncomfortable again. Get your inner voice working. Keep the pressure on and the blinders off!
4. Start Something: Progress defeats resistance every time. Stop thinking in terms of “completion” and start thinking about “action.” Most touchdowns are a series of first downs. Start thinking in “10-yard” increments. Do anything to get out of the mire and into an action mode. Victory is doing something.
5. Reward Progress: When you beat resistance, even for the moment, reward your self. This doesn’t mean go buy a new car or a steak dinner every time you do something. It means – take a moment to pat your self on the back and say “good job – you beat it today.” It is often a life-long battle so get used to celebrating the little victories along the way.
Remember, to live deliberately takes effort. Slipping into the default is not an option. As you move the needle and grow – resistance shows up and starts to push back. Start implementing these practices today.
Growth is not a given. It is hard. However, even if you take three steps forward and two steps back – you are still advancing! That’s the name of the game. So go on a hunt for resistance – watch for it, identify it and then beat it with these strategies!